AEP accepting applications for cooling assistance
GAHANNA — The AEP Ohio Neighbor to Neighbor Program is now accepting applications for utility assistance grants for the 2021 summer cooling season.
Through a partnership between AEP Ohio, an American Electric Power company, and Dollar Energy Fund, the Neighbor to Neighbor Program supports families in need with a grant applied directly to their AEP Ohio account to prevent disconnection of, or to restore their electric service. Cooling assistance is available once per program year on a first-come, first-served basis.
Eligible account holders may apply through Aug. 31, while funds are available.
“The global pandemic was extremely difficult for many families and individuals we serve in Ohio, and some continue to face significant economic challenges,” said Jon Williams, managing director of customer experience and distribution technology for AEP Ohio. “As a good community partner and neighbor, we’re committed to supporting people who are struggling to make ends meet. Through this cooling program, we can help our customers — especially the elderly and those with health problems — maintain their electric service during the hot summer months.”
Since AEP Ohio and Dollar Energy Fund launched the Neighbor to Neighbor Program in May 2009, more than $15.4 million in assistance has been granted to more than 64,000 Ohio households.
To apply, customers may contact one of the AEP Ohio Neighbor to Neighbor Program’s network of more than 120 Ohio community-based organizations. To qualify, an applicant’s total gross household income must be at or below 300 percent of the Federal Poverty Income Guidelines.
For example, a family of four earning up to $79,500 per year is income-eligible for the program. Households must have an outstanding balance on their bill of at least $50 and behind on bill payment 30 days or more.
Full eligibility guidelines and application instructions can be found at AEPOhio.com/helpaneighbor.
“Dollar Energy Fund is proud to maintain its support for AEP Ohio and its efforts to serve families who find themselves in a temporary financial crisis,” said Chad Quinn, chief executive officer of Dollar Energy Fund. “The AEP Ohio Neighbor to Neighbor Program has become a very useful resource for thousands of households across Ohio, enabling them to maintain utility service when blindsided by unexpected circumstances.”
The AEP Ohio Neighbor to Neighbor Program is funded by public contributions that are matched dollar-for-dollar by AEP Ohio. Utility customers may make a contribution through their monthly AEP Ohio bill. Donations also can be made online at www.AEPOhio.com/N2N or by sending a check directly to The AEP Ohio Neighbor to Neighbor Program, Box 42329, Pittsburgh, PA 15203. Every donation to the Neighbor to Neighbor Program is used to assist eligible families residing in Ohio. Every dollar donated to the Neighbor to Neighbor Program will be matched by AEP Ohio. These matching funds and 100 percent of your donation will assist limited-income families residing in Ohio to afford utility service. With AEP Ohio’s match, your tax-deductible donation will have twice the impact.
For more information about Dollar Energy Fund and how to apply for the Hardship Program or donate to the organization, visit www.dollarenergy.org.